Succulent Chicken over a Caponata Ragout


This was a wonderful meal, the house smelt so amazing while it was cooking.  It is an easy and inexpensive meal to cook, and I think total it took me maybe 30 minutes to prep and 20 to bake. The flavors were indescribable; but here it goes, sweet with a tang, crispy yet juicy and tender. In the end this meal came together very well and was not a letdown in any fashion of the word.

I originally was going to buy just the chicken halves (bone in) but one was the same cost as an entire chicken. So I purchased a chicken and cut it apart myself.  Remember when working with raw chicken to continually clean your hands and the work surface so you don’t cross contaminate at all.  Don’t want anyone getting sick after eating such a fantastic meal!

If you don’t know how to cut the chicken apart click HERE and it will direct you in the know hows.  This is so easy and really a great way to save money when using bone in chicken.  I did not use the giblets not the wings but every other part was utilized.

You will need a chicken cut into 6 pieces (skin on)

For the seasoning rub I kind of eyeballed the amounts.  Rumor has it that I did a excellent job because the smell and taste were phenomenal. So I took a pic before mixing them.  Do it to your taste preference. Use what spices you think would go together and make a rub out of it.


Salt and pepper

Garlic powder


Chili powder

Olive oil

1 small eggplant (they cook down a lot so don’t worry if you think it is to big)

1 medium onion

3 ribs of celery (use the leafy top as well)

1 tomato

2 cups tomato juice (I used V8 spicy)

Chopped fresh basil

Drizzle of red wine vinegar (about 2 teaspoons0

2 tablespoons of brown sugar

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Combine the spices in a bowl and sprinkle over the chicken.

IMG_5634 In a large pot heat 2 teaspoons of oil over medium high heat. Add the chicken, skin side down and cook until a nice sear has been achieved.  About 4-5 minutes.

IMG_5636IMG_5638  We are not cooking the chicken just creating a nice crispy coat so the juicy can’t escape while the chicken is cooking. Turnover and sear the other side, remove to a plate.

While it is cooking cut up the eggplant, onion, celery and tomato.

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Once all the pieces have been cooked if needed add a bit more oil, cook the eggplant onion and celery until semi soft. Place in a 9×11 or larger oven proof pan, add the tomatoes and juice. Top with the chicken skin side up and bake for 20 minutes or so.


When you remove it from the oven, plate the chicken, drain the juice from the ragout, and add the brown sugar and vinegar incorporate fully.

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Plate the ragout add the basil on top then top with some chicken, serve with a nice crusty bread.  Oh so good, what a great meal to have to end your day with you family. YUMMY!

Enjoy the recipe and as always I can be reached at

Bon Appétit


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